Mad Dogs: Sir Noël Peirce Coward

16 December 1899 – 26 March 1973

English composer, playwright, director, actor/singer who defined 1920’2 & 1930’s British chic, he received an American Academy Honorary Award for a 1943 British propaganda film. Though he wanted to work with the British Secret Service, Churchill felt he was better suited to keeping up morale at home, but he said he was most at home with the navy, especially below decks.

Although he never openly discussed his sexuality, he did nothing to hide it. What he had he described as “a talent to amuse.”

He showed many of us what sophistication meant and how to laugh at it when it became pretentious. In the 1950’s he brought all these talents together in his Cabaret Acts in London, New York and Las Vegas.

In praise of Coward's versatility, Lord Mountbatten said, in a tribute on Coward's seventieth birthday, "There are probably greater painters than Noël, greater novelists than Noël, greater librettists, greater composers of music, greater singers, greater dancers, greater comedians, greater tragedians, greater stage producers, greater film directors, greater cabaret artists, greater TV stars. If there are, they are fourteen different people. Only one man combined all fourteen different labels – The Master."

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